Review: Mighty Morphin Power Rangers (2016), Issue #0 and #1

MMPR Issue 0Title: Mighty Morphin Power Ranger, Issues #0 and #1
Author(s): Kyle Higgins
Publisher(s): BOOM! Studios
Language(S): English
Format: Paperback
Pages: 24-32 
Genre: Action, Science Fiction, Superhero
Release Date: January 13 & March 2, 2016 

After what feels like 10,000 years the Power Rangers come back into action in their latest comic series!  After being set free from Rita Repulsa’s mind control, Tommy joins the Power Rangers in their fight against evil. However, while the rest of the rangers are glade to have Tommy on their side, the once evil Green Ranger feels out-of-place and his intense doubt may interfere with his duties as a ranger. As always, Empress Rita has a new villainous plan and it does not seem she will let Tommy’s abandonment of the evil go unpunished. 

Taking place after the events of the “Green with Evil” story-arch of the show, this new comic adds something to the Power Rangers continuity that creates more substance to Tommy’s ongoing story and character. Tommy appears to have mixed feelings, and suffers from some self-doubt. Tommy’s feelings affect not only his social interaction with the rangers, but also his duties as a ranger. The situation is not helped by the fact that he has a literal devil on his shoulder.  While Tommy is suffering his guilt however, he does not descend completely into a cliché brooding state. 

As for the other rangers, the comic provides more believable characterization of the rangers, who in the show had a tendency to seem too trusting and generically perfect compared to later ranger teams. Most of the team is still accepting of Tommy’s addition. Jason, the Red Ranger and team leader, seems to have shades of doubt regarding Tommy. Most of Jason’s dialogue shows he trusts Zordon’s decision to add Tommy to the group however his expression and demeanor contradict his words. Jason has always been the stoic and disciplined leader of the group; having full faith in his team and Zordon, however it is not beyond the realm of possibility to have second thoughts which will probably be developed in later stories.

Regarding the plot of the comic, it appears Rita Repulsa has more plans for Tommy and is not going to let him off so easily. While it is too soon to tell what her endgame is, the comic makes it enticing to find out. In the show The Empress of Evil, has been portrayed as a very camp and humorous villain. She also shows shades of a petty, vindictive, and relentless behavior. This comic shows her at her beat. In addition, the artwork displays the menace of Rita and her band of misfits just by appearance alone. Speaking of the art drawn by Hendry Prasetya, it is very pronounced, entertaining, vibrant and expressive. Prasetya has done a fine job recreating the looks of Angel Grove High, the Command Center, Rita’s Palace, the Megazord fights and the ranger suits with fine detail.

Evil power ranger 2

As for character design, while the original actors features are not depicted accurately in the comics which favors a more anime-inspired design. The design is befitting since the series was made using stock footage from a Japanese series, “Kyoryu Sentai Zyuranger.” The design for the teenagers with attitude really made them appear like actual teenagers and not actors in their 20s. The art also shined during the fight scene, where the level of detail was pushed to the limit. The villains, minus Goldar sadly, seem even a bit more sinister in this style as well, with Rita looking as regal as ever and her henchmen looking a little more menacing.

The only flaw the comic has is the rather bizarre numbering. Traditionally an issue 0 is a prequel story and is not a requirement to read in order to understand the overall story, thus can be skipped. Issue #0 of this series felt more like a first issue which introduces the reader to the characters, the villains, setting and puts the plot in motion. However, this is a minor flaw in the grand scheme of things.

Final Thoughts:
Overall the comic is fun, entertaining, adds more characterization and believable interactions among the cast and definitely invokes a sense of nostalgia for older Power Rangers fans. Readers who only have tangential information regarding Power Rangers can still enjoy the comic, however, would be advised to watch the Green with Evil saga in order to get a full grasp and appreciation of story and to ensure the enjoyment of the series.

 

Morphinominal!

Summary

If you are a Power Rangers fan, then you are probably going to enjoy this comic. If you are a fan of the Green Ranger, even better!

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About The Author

Julius Cantara

Julius Cantara is an avid comic book, anime and cartoon enthusiast who also a budding journalist native to the beautiful island of Guam. Julius has also worked for several publications as a reporter, covering a variety of stories. When he isn't being a journalist he is immersed in adventurous stories of spandex-sporting, caped crusaders battling dastardly villains.